When the New Israel Fund sent an action alert to protest gender-segregated buses in Israel, we got an enthusiastic response.
When we and the human rights groups we fund were attacked in Israel, viciously and dishonestly, we asked for signatures to a petition to Prime Minister Netanyahu in support of democratic dissent, and we got a very enthusiastic response.
But the immediate reaction we got to a brief, carefully-balanced letter we sent about the...well, let's call it the disastrous incident of the Gaza flotilla... now that was a response.
Human rights groups say they are being unfairly targeted
Concerned that some nonprofit groups in Israel are quietly being bankrolled by foreign political entities, seven Knesset members have introduced a bill to require that they immediately report receipt of such funds and publicly announce it in all written and oral political presentations.
New Israel Fund (NIF) CEO Daniel Sokatch opines that his group has been the victim of “false arguments and dangerous demonization” (‘The Real Anti-NIF Agenda,’ Feb. 16). But Sokatch cannot allege falsehood and demonization if I merely point out that several of the beneficiaries of the New Israel Fund (NIF) are in fact hostile to Israel’s existence as a Jewish state.
As the controversy over grantees of the New Israel Fund and their alleged role in supplying information used by the Goldstone Report on the Gaza war rages here and in Israel, I can't help but wonder this: what are the critics so afraid of?
There's an irony here. Unlike its adversaries in the Middle East, Israel actually has a vigorous, outspoken and independent human rights movement willing and able to critically examine the actions of its own government. That's a good thing, right?
Right-wing Im Tirtzu accuses New Israel Fund —and its president — of bearing responsibility for Goldstone; NIF decries campaign to repress ‘dissent and honesty.’
Charges that the New Israel Fund supports Israeli civil rights groups that played a key role in providing information highly critical of Israel’s role in the Gaza war last year have sparked a spirited, and nasty, debate over the proper role for civil and human rights groups in a democratic state.
A democratic society not only tolerates but encourages debate and dissent. But when attacks turn ugly, demonizing and personal, they demean society and undercut the argument of those making the accusations.
In this week’s paper, we report on two such unfortunate episodes, one here and one in Israel — two open societies where left-right political anger is spilling over into hate.
An initiative by Israel’s ruling One Israel party to rally American Jewish supporters of its peace policies blew up in acrimony last week over the issue of religious pluralism in the Jewish state.
Haim Ramon, a senior cabinet minister and key adviser to Prime Minister Ehud Barak, bluntly rejected concerns about religious and civil rights for non-Orthodox Jews raised at what was to be a private briefing on the peace process for centrist and dovish Jewish groups.
American organizations that advocate equal rights for Arab residents of Israel were critical of a bill passed by the Knesset in an early stage last week that would limit the sale of Jewish National Fund land sales to Jews. The bill, approved in its first reading by a 64-16 vote, would bypass a 2004 court ruling and in effect bar the Israel Lands Authority from selling JNF land to Israeli Arabs.